A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘mcdonald’s

[URBAN NOTE] Six Toronto links

  • Google has apologized for the negative shade its image search cast on Scarborough with a Twitter thread. Global News reports.
  • The National Post looks at the story of the architecturally remarkable Integral House, on sale for $C 21.5 million.
  • South Indian Dosa Mahal, a beloved Bloordale restaurant apparently displaced by landlords, has found a new home. blogTO reports.
  • The infamous Parkdale McDonald, at King and Dufferin, has officially been closed down, relocated. blogTO reports.
  • The Ontario Cannabis Store is experimenting with a same-day delivery program. NOW Toronto reports.
  • Lia Grainger writes at NOW Toronto about how poor city planning has resulted in multiple dangerous intersections. (I know of two in my broader neighbourhood.)

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly talks about some of the less visible heroes of journalism, of support staff and the like.
  • Centauri Dreams takes a look at astrophysicist Adam Frank’s thoughts on extraterrestrial civilizations in the past, on “exoarcheology”.
  • D-Brief notes SIMP J01365663+0933473, a rogue superjovian planet 20 light years away with a powerful magnetic field and possibly even a major moon.
  • Hornet Stories notes (possibly unfair) criticism of the Provincetown AIDS Memorial by Masha Gessen, who wishes it had more recognition of specifically gay victims and of the community’s anger.
  • JSTOR Daily takes a look at the challenges faced by the Outer Space Treaty, fifty years old and facing unprecedented challenges of a militarized space.
  • Erik Loomis writes at Lawyers, Guns and Money about the need for the left to articulate a coherent and serious agenda on global trade.
  • The Map Room Blog notes that the US military has told its personnel to turn off their portable devices’ geolocation in sensitive areas.
  • Marginal Revolution notes that, in some cities, people have begun to sleep rough in all-night McDonald’s restaurants on account of the lack of affordable housing.
  • Drew Rowsome interviews some of the actors involved in the queer play Box 4901, a new SummerWorks play written by playwright and novelist Brian Francis. Sounds exciting!
  • The Speed River Journal’s Van Waffle writes about how cicadas are important to him, and why.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel warns that Project Starshot and like interstellar propulsion methods, which would project engineless starships at relativistic speeds, could endanger life–and people–on the planets that these starships investigated.
  • Strange Maps’ Frank Jacobs notes/u> some people in the Turkish province of Batman want to bring their province’s borders in line with those of the character.
  • Arnold Zwicky shares Arthur’s photo of the tasteful rainbow poles at the entrance to Montréal’s Beaudry Métro station, in the heart of the Village gay.

[URBAN NOTE] Five city links: Niagara Falls, Brantford, Regina, Tofino, Port Moody

  • Why are the falls at Niagara Falls so famously compelling, even lethally seductive for some? Some human brains might be confused by the immensity. The National Post reports.
  • The extent of the flooding in Brantford, inland from Hamilton on the Grand River, is shocking. The Toronto Star reports.
  • The Saskatchewan capital city of Regina turns out to be the McDonald’s breakfast capital of Canada. Global News reports.
  • This essay in The Globe and Mail by Greg Blanchette looking at the rental housing crunch in the small Vancouver Island town of Tofino describes what’s frankly a terrifying situation.
  • If not for the fact that the CP Railway owned no property locally, the Vancouver suburb of Port Moody could well have become Canada’s biggest west coast metropolis. Global News reports.

[URBAN NOTE] “McDonalds opens first standalone McCafe at Union Station”

If McDonald’s can make the transition described by the Toronto Star‘s Lisa Wright, the more power to them. McDonald’s coffee really is very good, you know.

When he started out at McDonald’s in 1970, John Betts never pictured grilled cheese would one day be on the menu, let alone Campbell’s chicken soup or chocolate chunk brownies.

And soy lattes were absolutely unheard of back when the chief executive of McDonald’s Canada was flipping burgers in Southampton, New York.

Just don’t ask for a Big Mac at Canada’s first standalone McCafe, which opens this morning at Union Station, followed by a new 19-seat cafe to be launched in January at First Canadian Place.

“A cup of coffee got us here today. It’s an amazing story because we’re a hamburger place,” Betts said in an interview Tuesday, as the finishing touches were being put on the chain’s splashy new café in the York concourse.

He explained it’s a natural progression from the 138 million free cups of coffee McDonald’s Canada has handed out to customers since its popular brew launched in 2009, when he took the helm of the stagnating burger brand.

Written by Randy McDonald

December 10, 2015 at 7:51 pm

[PHOTO] One McLobster

One McLobster #mclobster #mcdonalds #lobsters #sandwiches

I split a McLobster sandwich last night in Toronto. The sandwich, traditionally a feature of Atlantic Canadian McDonald’s outlets, has this season been the subject of a national roll-out. Why not try it? I argued. $C 8 is not that high a price.

I’m used to lobster sandwiches being fresh, with a flavourless sauce like mayo. This lobster was not especially fresh, the lemony sauce was suspicious, and the lettuce-to-lobster ratio was high. This was not a bad sandwich, mind, certainly compared to the alternative of having no lobster sandwich was much better. It was fast food, for better or for worse. Expecting more would have been inappropriate.

Written by Randy McDonald

June 24, 2015 at 4:00 pm

[LINK] “McDonald’s Wants to Be Your Coffee Shop”

I’ve been following the evolution of McDonald’s for some time, not least because of its surprisingly good coffee. Venessa Wong’s Bloomberg BusinessWeek article suggesting that coffee is going to be an integral part of the McDonald’s experience as the fast-food restaurant tries to take over a chunk of the cafe market makes sense to me.

Some have ruminated about the deeper meaning of McDonald’s (MCD) free coffee promotion, which runs through April 13. Here’s one more thought: It’s another attempt to promote the chain as a so-called third place—that daily destination away from home and away from work, and a concept that Starbucks (SBUX) essentially owns—via its McCafé beverage line.

[. . .]

Of course, McDonald’s coffee giveaway is also part of the company’s ongoing efforts to keep people hooked on its breakfast while fast-food restaurants such as Taco Bell (YUM) launch morning menus, and also to drum up interest in McDonald’s bagged coffee, which is coming to grocers. But there’s a decided push to market McCafé as a social product: The “Make Friends with McCafé” sampling events include live music (Karmin performed in New York) and comedy.

The question is, what’s friendship have to do with McCafé? Consumers already head to McDonald’s for quick, on-the-go breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, so it seems the chain now wants to develop a strong affiliation with other occasions: an afternoon break or a leisurely meet-up with friends—the kinds of moments you probably associate with Starbucks. Following in Starbucks’s footsteps, McDonald’s brought in expensive espresso machines and Wi-Fi and introduced seasonal hot beverages.

Written by Randy McDonald

April 2, 2014 at 12:45 am

[LINK] “Tim Hortons plans 800 more restaurants”

CBC reported on Tim Horton’s plans for yet further expansion, most of which is expected to be in Canada.

(For the record, I don’t really like Tim’s coffee. McDonald’s coffee, mentioned in the article, is actually better–better-tasting, at least–and quite cost-competitive.)

Tim Hortons has laid out an ambitious plan to add 800 more franchise outlets by 2018, the latest shot in an escalating war to stay on top of the quick breakfast and coffee market.

The TSX-listed company said Tuesday it will add as many as 300 new locations in the U.S. in the next four years, a market where it has had difficulty gaining a foothold.

It also plans 500 more locations in Canada by 2018, including 160 as early as this year, a market where the brand enjoys extreme brand loyalty but is perceived to be near saturation.

[. . .]

Franchise consultant Douglas Fisher says Tim Hortons has almost saturated the Canadian market, and that shows in its year-over-year sales increases of 1.6 per cent, less than inflation.

In Ontario and most other regions outside Quebec, there is one restaurant for every 7,500 people, and that’s meant less business for individual franchisees.

“Once you saturate a market, you have to go look for a new market or you’re going to die,” Fisher told CBC News, saying he supports a strategy of expansion in the U.S. and the Middle East.

But the U.S. has been a difficult market for Tim Hortons, so it is selecting a few areas where it believes it will do well, he said.

The Middle East may have greater potential, because the chain offers a fresh concept for people there, said Fisher, who has done work for both Tim Hortons and McDonald’s.

Written by Randy McDonald

February 26, 2014 at 9:02 pm

[PHOTO] Dupont and Dufferin, 4 o’clock in the morning

This slice of the world late at night is something that you, too, can discover for yourself if when you really need to use the WiFi at a conveniently located McDonald’s late at night when your home connection has died.

Dupont and Dufferin, 4 o'clock in the morning

Written by Randy McDonald

July 9, 2013 at 3:29 pm

[PHOTO] Where once there was a McDonald’s

The apartment tower at 20 Prince Arthur is now fully visible through the new gab in the Bloor Street landscape west of Avenue Road.

Once, a commercial stretch including one of the first McDonald’s outside the United States was here, but earlier this year it was torn down to make way for the Exhibit Condos.

Where once there was a McDonald's (1)

Where once there was a McDonald's (2)

Written by Randy McDonald

June 26, 2013 at 5:52 pm

[PHOTO] Debating McDonald’s

McDonald’s Canada has a new PR campaign aimed at revealing all of its secrets. Yes, they have revealed the secret behind their inimitable French fries, but as the National Post‘s Hollie Shaw reported that’s part of a much bigger campaign.

McDonald’s Canada has launched a widespread ad campaign to promote the live online marketing initiative it launched in the summer to tackle urban myths and answer freqently asked consumer questions, “Our Food. Your Questions.”

The digital platform launched in June and asks consumers to pose any and all questions they have about about McDonald’s food and the restaurant chain vows to post honest, personalized responses online. (Example: Is it true the beef you use is washed in ammonia?”)

“The initial success of the program is a real testament to the power of creating meaningful and open dialogue with customers,” said Joel Yashinsky, chief marketing officer at McDonald’s Canada.

“This level of transparency has resonated with our guests and has created the type of conversation we want to have with them about our food. We’re excited to see how far it can go.”

The campaign from Tribal DDB Toronto runs for the next four weeks and includes television, digital and various outdoor media.

Since its inception the company’s response team has covered almost 6,000 questions at the site mcdonalds.ca/yourquestions. Answers have been posted using text, photos and video.

I overheard the three people standing on the right of the photo talking about McDonald’s, the man talking–boasting–about what he knew from his experience working at McDonald’s. I left the scene, at Yonge and Bloor station, before he confessed what he did to the food.

Debating McDonald's

Written by Randy McDonald

October 23, 2012 at 12:58 pm